Last summer, Pollensa town hall made something of a surprise announcement of a concert. This was by the Escolania de Lluc Chamber Orchestra, and so it wasn’t that the performance was a surprise, the venue was - the military base.

The publicity image that the town hall chose for this unexpected event showed a Canadair flying over the bay. The firefighting seaplanes are what everyone most associates with the base. They’re about all that everyone associates with the base. It is in a way somewhat odd that an image so linked to Puerto Pollensa that it inspired a roundabout sculpture should disguise such an unknown.

The base is rarely open to the public, while the neighbouring La Fortalesa is only open to TV series production crews and actors as well as to brides and grooms plus guests for sports personalities’ weddings. The fact that access to La Fortalesa is across ministry of defence land has only heightened local indignation as to the lack of visiting rights.

Built on behalf of Franco’s Nationalists during the Civil War, the base, a military aerodrome, is nowadays still deemed to serve a strategic military purpose. Hence it is guarded and is off-limits except when authorisation is granted. The concert in July last year was a surprise because ordinary local people are generally denied any possibility of access. The Seaplane Splash-In events have been notable because the general public have been able to get in.

An argument has long been, and the same applies to the Cap Pinar military zone in Alcudia, that access should be granted because the coasts of Spain cannot be privatised. There is a constitutional right of access. Yes, but military needs supersede this.

The new mayor of Pollensa, Martí March, visited the base the other day - mayors are allowed in - and met Colonel Alberto Sevilla Seguí, the base’s commander. It is said that “various issues” were discussed, but the issues primarily had to do with access and future collaborations that would mean that the general public could attend events. March was of the view that there should be more days, as the base is “an infrastructure that belongs to Pollensa”.

Well, it may belong insofar as the land is Pollensa’s, but the ministry of defence is the owner, so we will have to see what - if anything - comes of the meeting and a planned second meeting to “specify collaborations”.

In reports of the mayor’s visit, background to the base’s history noted that a residential area which fulfils “social functions” was created in 1972. For those of you unaware of this residential area and the social functions, I should explain that the base doubles as a sort of exclusive holiday camp for the military. It comes replete with its own private beach - yes, private - and is in great demand among members of the military and their families. You bet it’s in great demand.

It’s said that the old houses on the bases have been made more and more luxurious over the years and that the camp is typically for high-ranking officers. There is a story, however, which suggests that it isn’t only frequented by the military. As far as I’m aware, there was never any official confirmation of this story, but in 2010 certain “military sources” let it be known that Telma Ortiz had stayed at the base on at least more than one occasion.

In 2010, her sister, Letizia, had yet to become Queen Letizia, but she was then the Princess of Asturias. Felipe was the Prince of Asturias, and the royal couple were staying at the Marivent Palace in Palma for their summer holidays, as they continue to stay at the palace each summer. The story goes that Telma wasn’t able to get a place at the palace because she wasn’t a royal, but as she wished to be in Mallorca at the same time as her sister, she needed some accommodation, which was the Pollensa military base.

Technically, an explanation went, she could have access to the accommodation as she was a relative of an air force lieutenant colonel - she was Felipe’s sister-in-law. But it would have been normal, so the explanation continued, for her to have been accompanied by the relevant relative, which clearly wasn’t the case.

So, access to be the base and rather more than just the base is - it seems - “technically” feasible. But it does depend on who the relatives are.

Representatives of the neighbourhood platform against the cable, with the mayoress of Alcúdia, Fina Linares, to whom they handed in another 2,700 signatures.

More signatures opposed to the electricity cable in the Bay of Pollensa

Where are we at with the electricity cable saga? It went rather quiet around election time but has now sprung back into life. Earlier this week, the VAAC campaign group - Residents of Alcudia Affected by the Cable - delivered a petition with a further 2,767 signatures opposed to the mainland cable entering at a point on the Bay of Pollensa to the mayor, Fina Linares. There are now some 6,000 signatures in all. The petition has also gone to President Prohens and to the ministries of health, the sea, and energy.

The group is urging the president to speed up a parliamentary vote on a motion raised by the El Pi party which wasn’t held by the previous administration. It’s claimed that the coalition vetoed this as it didn’t wish to suffer any potential damage ahead of the elections.

The motion is for the cable to enter via the Bay of Alcudia. A precise point hasn’t been defined, but the logic of the proposal would mean the Alcudia port area so that the cable to the substation on the industrial estate next to the Es Murterar power station could potentially be laid on the same route as the existing high-tension cable from the substation to the port. In addition, the motion proposes that any posidonia sea grass affected by the cable being laid on the Bay of Alcudia seabed should be replanted.

The ultimate decision regarding the cable’s route lies with the Spanish government. Time is now starting to get short, as Red Electrica, the national grid company, is scheduled to have this second connection from the mainland operational in 2026. It is estimated that it will take around two years to lay the cable on the seabed between Valencia and the north of Mallorca.